Description[Matilda Charlotte Houstoun]. Texas and the Gulf of Mexico; or Yachting in the New World: By Mrs. Houstoun. With Portraits and Illustrations. London: John Murray, 1844. First edition. Two octavo volumes in twelves (7.75" x 4.75"). vii, 314; viii, 360 pages; no advertisements. Illustrated with seven engraved plates. Bound full in leather with "The Society of Writers to the Signet" seal gilt stamped to the covers of both volumes. Spines tastefully rebacked with original spine laid on; Vol. I has new material at tail. Gilt ruling and five raised bands with morocco spine labels and gilt titles on spine. Covers lightly worn with minor loss to corners and spine ends. Small library label to front pastedowns with no other markings present. Endpapers have minor browning at edges. Very light toning to pages. Light offsetting at engravings. Cloth slipcase. Otherwise, a better than very good set of volumes.
"This sprightly account was written by a wealthy English lady who visited Texas in 1842 in her husband's private yacht. Her view of the Texans is surprisingly free of snobbery, although she viewed them with the same paternalism that the English of her day viewed all non-Englishmen. Moreover, she had that rare gift of intellect and character that enabled her to perceive the idiosyncrasies of the Texans."
"'Were I asked what is the national religion of the Texan people, I should answer none.' She called Texans 'an impatient people; they drive to, and at their end, with greater velocity than any individuals I ever saw or ever heard of. Nothing stops them in their go-ahead career'" (Basic Texas Books).
References: Basic Texas Books 97. Clark III-182. Howes H693. Raines, p. 120. Sabin 33202. Streeter, 1506.
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